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Office workers feeling the squeeze

New data released recently from CoreNet Global show for the first time that for many companies, the average allocation of office space per person in North America will fall to 100 square feet or below within the next five years.

By 2017, at least 40% of the companies responding indicated they will reach this all-time low benchmark of individual space utilization, which has been the case in Europe for the past several years but is now heading for the Americas.

The average for all companies for square feet per worker in 2017 will be 151 square feet, compared to 176 square feet today, and 225 square feet in 2010.

"The main reason for the declines," said Richard Kadzis, CoreNet Global's Vice President of Strategic Communications, "is the huge increase in collaborative and team-oriented space inside a growing number of companies that are stressing 'smaller but smarter' workplaces against the backdrop of continuing economic uncertainty and cost containment."

CoreNet Global, which conducted the survey, is the worldwide association for corporate real estate and workplace professionals.

Today, just 24 percent of the respondents reported that the average space per office worker is 100 square feet or less; however, 40 percent reported that within five years, the average space per office worker would be 100 square feet or less.

It is clear that the amount of space dedicated solely to specific employees is steadily shrinking. A majority of the respondents, 55 percent, reported that square feet per worker has already decreased between 5 and 25 percent over the last five years.

"There are number of additional factors contributing to the decline in the amount of space per worker," said Kadzis. "More companies are adopting open floor plans in which employees do not have any permanently designated space at all; rather they use unassigned space when they are in the office, settings that often change daily. This trend is enabled by technology and by cost measures, as they require smaller foot prints."

CoreNet Global will continue to track this downward pressure on designated office space per worker over time.

The CoreNet Global benchmark survey was conducted in February 2012. More than 465 global managers of corporate real estate responded.

CoreNet Global is the world's leading association for corporate real estate (CRE) and workplace professionals, service providers, and economic developers. Our more than 7,000 members, who include 70% of the top 100 U.S. companies and nearly half of the Global 2000, meet locally, globally and virtually to develop networks, share knowledge, learn and thrive professionally.

CoreNet Global itself reduced its total office space and space per person by nearly 20% last year in a transformation of its downtown Atlanta headquarters.

Source ATLANTA, Feb. 28, 2012 /PRNewswire  www.


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